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Old 06-07-2014, 03:37 AM   #1
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Hand Brake Kit?

First time Jeep owner here so please don't bash. I just bought a beautiful 89 YJ and for a few reasons want a hand break. My mechanic said good luck finding a kit but they might be out there. Anyone know where to find such an animal and/or have any experience or comments on them?
Thanks in advance, sorry if it is a dumb question but I figured this would be as good a place to ask as any.

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Old 06-07-2014, 05:29 AM   #2
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I have never seen of heard of a hand brake in a jeep unless it was a DJ (mail jeep). Its possible that if you scower the salvage you might be able to fab up something that will work. You also may contact companies that cater to dune buggies they may have something that will work.

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Old 06-07-2014, 07:41 AM   #3
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Some ideas that I have seen (in no particular order)

1) mount a Pontiac Fiero handbrake to the left of your seat. It has a special handle that rotates down out of the way after it is engaged. I think a particular Corvette brake might have the same feature.

2) mount a TJ, XJ or ZJ to the right of the seat.

There are several good reasons for wanting the hand brake - starting on an incline can be easier with a hand brake. Also, cage enhancements can render the existing foot brake inaccessible.
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Old 06-07-2014, 08:58 AM   #4
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I moved the hand brake from my XJ to be in front of the seat instead of the center. Just about anything is possible with a little inventiveness.

I'll try and find a pic, but basically what I did was pull the brake, seal the old hole with flat plate and seam sealer, and then cut a hole in the floor and put a backing plate on the bottom and bolted the handbrake down there through the plate and sealed it up. It was close enough I didn't have to extend much of the line but I did have to fabricate a new adjuster and add about a foot of length. <this is where inventiveness helps by the way... the handle is the easy part.

It doesn't really help taking off cause you have to bend over so much to engage it.

If I were you, I'd find a "pull style" dash mounted brake like the older Toyota trucks use.
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Old 06-07-2014, 09:01 AM   #5
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Like this one... They sell universal ones IIRC. Isuzu/GMC cab over trucks use this type as well.

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Old 06-07-2014, 01:29 PM   #6
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Thanks guys, I appreciate the input. I had no idea if there was an actual kit or not and it sounds like the answer is no. Stan, you are right with regard to the incline issue. I live in a wet climate with a lot of steep hills and the rig has been so customized that there is very little weight in the rear end. The thought of getting stuck in the middle of some of these hills with cars behind me gives me hives. I will take what you guys have told me and figure something out. Thanks again!
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Old 06-07-2014, 01:43 PM   #7
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I have seen the innards of the Isuzu brake and it is stupid simple. Those trucks are built as cheap as possible, and then you just have to get a customs shop that can build you a cable system. Also consider the pinion mounted disk brake... I'm sure there is something available in a kit.
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Old 06-07-2014, 02:06 PM   #8
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That is a great idea, thanks for the input. I am about as far from a mechanic as they get but when mine said they don't exist, I thought that is impossible. It just takes thinking outside the box, and that you have. I will pass on the information, thanks again!
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Old 06-07-2014, 07:35 PM   #9
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Are you wanting mechanical like a e brake or hydraulic. If hydraulic look up cutting or steering brake.
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Old 06-08-2014, 01:30 AM   #10
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Kingcat, I am wanting mechanical. I literally want it for steep streets mid city that are wet. My Jeep is light as a feather in the rear and the only way I can see making this work is with a hand brake.
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Old 06-08-2014, 01:36 PM   #11
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Try putting a few cinder blocks in the back on wet days for some extra traction. Lowering air pressure will help as well.

The Ebrake lever on my Vette is mounted on the left side of the seat and pulls up to engage and drops back down out of the way. You have to pull up a little harder then drop quickly to disengage it.
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Old 06-08-2014, 03:21 PM   #12
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Thanks 90. I have a 911 C-4 and and it can be challenging enough at times. Without the hand e-brake it would be very difficult even though all the weight is in the rear of the car. The Jeep is an entirely different animal with no weight in the back. I won't be packing blocks and I won't be letting air out of the tires. Appreciate the heads up however.

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